NRAMA: I spoke with John Cunninghman [DC VP of Marketing] at the DC booth and he said that, for the first time he could remember, people were coming into the booth and asking if they could buy Watchmen trades there…it seems that the buzz, at least at San Diego was all around in every way…
PL: We’re at an inflection point, and honestly, I think it will cost us some of the things we love in this business. It’s been a relatively easy business to be in casually. I think that the standard of how to do it is ratcheting up very, very quickly right now, but I think we’re going to see some very cool stuff happening in the next few years – it’s a moment of wonderful opportunity. I think the field is ready for it, and I like to hope that DC is proportionally ready for it.
NRAMA: With all this buzz for Watchmen, and for those of us who’ve been around comics for a while, we understand why Dave Gibbons is the creative spokesman for the film and property – but if we extrapolate the buzz of the Watchmen trailer into phenomenon level in a few months, could it spur on a reaching out to Alan Moore by DC? Is there a desire there to be reached out to, even, on his part?
PL: I have the greatest respect for Alan and his work. We’d love to work with him again some day, in any fashion, if he chose to.
§ A lot of commentary on Brigid Alverson’s PWCW piece yesterday in which Tokyopop’s Marco Pavia explains that titles that some said were canceled are only postponed. My own list of such titles was used as an example. Chris Butcher reacts:
I think it’s important to note that Tokyopop has refused to outright state that any title is canceled through any official channels, and the only public reports of complete book cancellations have come from the creators of affected work, like last week’s announcement from Shutterbox creator and Voice Of Gir Rikki Simmons that Shutterbox would not continue with Tokyopop. It’s entirely within Tokyopop’s right to be cagey about their publishing plans, they’ve got no impetus or even reason to announce that they’ve dropped a license… That’s exactly the sort of thing that gives your competitors a competitive edge.
Butcher goes on to present a list of titles once scheduled for this fall which are now not scheduled.
Just last year, yaoi was gaining a foothold in the American graphic novel market and growing. The erotic images and romantic stories were finding their way into retail chains like Borders, traditional comics shops and Amazon.com. But with Borders’ financial troubles and publishers meeting reader demand for sexier boys in steamier situations, the yaoi market may go back online and back underground, where it began.
Unlike its popular big sister, manga (Japanese comics), yaoi has never actually been big. Last year, yaoi accounted for $6 million within the $210 million domestic manga market, as estimated by Kuo-Yu Liang, vice president of sales and marketing at Diamond Book Distributors. The company is the United States’ biggest comics and graphic novels distributor and distributes yaoi to major book retailers like Borders and Waldenbooks as well as Books-a-Million, a chain of bookstores in Bible Belt America that has been a consistent supporter of yaoi.
This Ship Is Totally Sinking is here to give you a proper rundown of the world in breaking controversy with all the brevity and commitment to honor and justice you continue to demand. In a salute to the recently deceased Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, a great (and somewhat crazy) man, the motto “Don’t lie! Don’t participate in lies, don’t support a lie!” will be followed. (He wrote that in all caps, so at least I’m saving you that.)
§ Charlie Jane Anders suggests 10 Comics Creators We Wish Would Make Movies Instead Of Frank Miller, and there are about five on that list that we’d DEARLY love to see make a movie.